Agri-food sector gets nod from key federal panel

The federal Advisory Council on Economic Growth has tipped agriculture and food as an important opportunity

The agri-food sector has received a big-league endorsement from the federal Advisory Council on Economic Growth. The group gives policy direction to federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau. In a report that will receive plenty of attention around the cabinet table, agri-food is identified as one of eight sectors “where Canada has a strong endowment, untapped […] Read more


Farm leaders welcome high-profile panel’s praise

The federal Advisory Council on Economic Growth recently singled out 
the agri-food sector as a key growth opportunity

The leaders of farm organizations across the sector are basking in the praise of a high-profile federal advisory board. The Advisory Council on Economic Growth accorded the sector high profile in a recent report on Canada’s economic prospects. The report’s recognition of the agri-food sector should be especially valuable in raising its profile across the […] Read more



Measuring changes in the grain transportation system

Grain monitor proves that better data collection can drive change and improvement

The business adage that you can’t change what you don’t measure seems to fit the Prairie grain transportation system. In a presentation to the annual conference of the Canadian Agriculture Economics Society, Mark Hemmes, president of Quorum Corp., which tracks the performance of the grain transportation and handling system for Transport Canada, used the numbers […] Read more


Bee death reports continue decline: Health Canada

Neonic pesticides have been widely blamed for these losses but the reality is much more complex

Measures to protect pollinators from pesticide residues in dust generated by corn, soybean and canola planting have continued to reduce bee deaths during the planting season, says Health Canada. Following the introduction of the measures in 2014, the number of bee death incidents have remained well below the high levels of 2012 and 2013, the […] Read more



Appeal Court reverses CTA rulings against CN

The Federal Court of Appeal says the regulatory agency made errors in assessing car shortfalls in 2014

The Federal Court of Appeal has struck down rulings by the Canadian Transportation Agency that CN breached a level-of-service obligation in early 2014. The CTA said the failure was related to supplying two Prairie grain companies with sufficient hopper cars during the frigid early months of 2014. Justice Marc Nadon ruled the CTA “made unreasonable […] Read more


Food safety regulations proposed once again

Revamping these regulations began under the last government and have dragged on at some length

Proposals to modernize Canada’s food safety inspection rules will once again be the subject of cross-country public consultations by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. CFIA will hold a consultation running to April 21 to gather food industry and consumer reaction to the draft regulations it posted in the Canada Gazette Jan. 21. Then it will […] Read more



MacAulay pitches importance of Canada-U.S. agri-food trade

At a recent meeting of U.S. agriculture legislators he pointed out the balanced nature 
of agriculture and food trade between the two countries

Amid rumblings of U.S. action against Canadian agri-food imports, Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay recently spelled out the importance of cross-border trade to American agriculture leaders. In a speech in Baton Rouge, Louisiana to the annual meeting of the State Agriculture Leaders and the Legislative Agriculture Chairs Summit, MacAulay said in 2016, “$50 billion in agriculture […] Read more


Supply management sectors also face labour shortages

More stable employment means less employee loss, but key skills are still in short supply

Despite the relative stability supply management provides the dairy and poultry sectors, they suffer from labour shortages like the rest of agriculture. Those shortages are more in the manager and owner categories though, says the Canadian Agri-Food Human Resources Council (CAHRC). As part of its extensive study of worker shortages in agriculture, CAHRC has issued […] Read more



Veterinary association sets framework for medicine oversight

The guidelines are intended to lead to consistent regulations throughout Canada

Canadian veterinarians now have a framework for using antibiotics that will assist federal and provincial regulators concerned about antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The guidelines were developed by the Veterinary Pharmaceutical Stewardship Advisory Group of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, in collaboration with the Canadian Council of Veterinary Registrars (CCVR) and after discussions with government officials and […] Read more


Ottawa needs to get serious about encouraging renewable fuels

A constantly churning industry with various provincial standards 
isn’t a good foundation for growth, proponents say

If the federal government wants to see renewable fuels attracting investment and growing, it needs to set a national standard and provide stability. That’s according to Warren Mabee, public policy professor at Queen’s University, speaking at the Renewable Fuels Canada Forum, held recently in Ottawa. Sticking with the existing provincial standards means every province goes […] Read more